Last Updated: 2017-08-19
The Washington Nationals are going to the playoffs; about that much there is no doubt. But they would like to take steps beyond that, and they aren’t going to do that without their #1 starter available. And so they are concerned with the situation surrounding Max Scherzer. Fortunately for them, they get back their #2 starter, which isn’t so shabby because he is an All-Star. On Saturday they square off in the second game of their series with the San Diego Padres, beginning at 8:40 PM ET at Petco Park. VietBet customers know that they can get reduced juice before this game starts, and then Live Betting Ultra afterward, so that they can be a part of the action with real-time wagers.
The Nationals suffered what is potentially a pretty bad break when Scherzer had to be placed on the disabled list. The two-time Cy Young Award winner had been dealing with some pain in his neck, but tried to work that out prior to Friday night’s game. When that wasn’t the case, he had to pull himself off the start. Matt Grace made the start in his place and it was more or less a “bullpen” game as the Nats won a 7-1 verdict. The Nationals (73-47) have a 14-game lead in the NL East. The only real race the Padres (54-68) have going is to beat out the San Francisco Giants in an attempt to avoid last place in the NL West, and they are doing a good job of it, as they lead the Giants by five games.
Strasburg has not started a game since July 23, as he has been on the DL himself. He’ll get the nod against Travis Wood (2-4, 6.46 ERA) of the Padres.
In the MLB odds that have been posted on this game at VietBet, the Nationals are big favorites on the road:
Washington Nationals (Strasburg) -186
San Diego Padres (Wood) +176
Nationals -1.5 Runs -115
Padres +1.5 Runs -105
Over 7.5 Runs -130
Under 7.5 Runs +110
Strasburg (10-3, 3.25 ERA) got lifted after two innings against Arizona last time, and was discovered to have elbow problems that were serious enough to put him out of action. He’d been doing well before that, with Game Scores over 70 in three of his previous four outings. And earlier in the season, he was simply blistering against the Padres in the nation’s capital, striking out 15 batters in seven scoreless innings.
But from what we can gather from manager Dusty Baker, Strasburg isn’t necessarily going to have an opportunity to get that far. He has talked about “not pressing” his fire-baller, and that would seem to indicate a short leash, at least for this game. In his last four starts against San Diego, Strasburg has a 1.80 ERA and 40 strikeouts with five walks in 25 innings.
Wood has made four starts since being sent from Kansas City to the Padres, and he has a 5.57 ERA in those. Up until July, he had spent the entire season in relief. In only one game has he gone further than five innings, and his average Game Score is 42. Manager Andy Green is hoping and praying to get some quality innings out of him, but he hasn’t provided a whole lot of them. The thing is, Green says “Travis has been pretty decent since he has been here,” a sure indication that he is starved for pitching.
Washington’s pitching staff as a whole has been awesome of late, allowing just 16 runs over their last nine games. And that has produced a lot of unders. If Strasburg can show some of what he has in the past against this opponent, we can feel comfortable laying a run and a half at a more reasonable price.
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